Wednesday, April 13, 2022

How To Lead When You’re Not in Charge

Tanya Attebery

13 April 2022

Leadership 102: Self-Leadership

How To Lead When You’re Not in Charge

     I have learned a lot from this book. The most significant statement that stood out to me was “the first and foremost responsibility that is fully under your care is yourself. You are in charge of you. You are in charge of your attitude, your development, and your growth.” (Scroggins, 31). During my Central lessons I also found that I am living out my life for an audience of one also connected to my own thoughts about me being a leader when I am not in charge. That audience of one is God and how I live out my life matters to Him. It is what will be replayed as I enter eternity with Jesus. Following the example of Jesus is important to me so I gleaned three points that I plan on using though out the rest of the time God gives me on this Earth.

Point 1: “When you’re not in charge, there is something that wants to get into your heart and your mind and make you unhealthy” (Scroggins,78).

     I need to remove passivity from how I function in my career and in my own family. I have a tendency to ignore issues until I am so upset that I just explode. Seems a bit more like being passive aggressive. I know I should speak up in the moment and not allow my emotions to build where I am making emotional decisions and not allowing myself to be an influencer. I try to grab some sense of power back and feel dejected when it doesn’t work. I have put blame on others and just given up, but the point of the book is to take responsibility for my own emotions and responses in all circumstances with people. “Avoiding the trap of sitting on your hands in resignation or throwing your hands up in frustration is crucial in leading without authority” (Scroggins, 77) The author hit home with me when he talked about how unhealthy it is to allow the bitterness of not being in charge take hold of my mind and heart. I need to choose to cultivate influence by understanding the needs of my boss and how I can help accomplish the goals that person has set out even if it is behind the scenes. No more time for self-pity, but get the job done to meet the needs of the people we are serving within the community.

Point 2: “It is your energy or attitude. A positive, can-do, forward-thinking, hope-filled attitude covers a multitude of leadership shortcomings” (Scroggins, 47).

     Only I am control of my attitude. I can choose positivity. Central lessons talked about how many programs they have that start with the word hope. “Trust that where you are right now is exactly where God wants you. It’s where you’re supposed to be. If you choose to trust, it will broaden your perspective” (Scroggins, 49). Positivity can be the most powerful tool I can use because it does bring good energy to the table. The idea that even if the job seems pointless there is a way to make it happen in a positive way. Taking in how powerful Jesus could have been pushing around his authority, but how he chose humility and then on the cross he took his authority not that we avenge him but that we forgive our enemies. That is a such a freedom and builds an authentic character which I want to strive for not matter if I am in charge or not. Jesus built a unity within the small group of disciples which led to the foundation of the early church. Now I can see his plan unfolding of giving redemption to the whole world. Jesus is a great example and this author provided me my own path where “authority cultivates influence and prepares you to lead in the future” (Scroggins, 51).

Point 3: “There’s no trick to leading yourself well. It requires discipline and intentionality. Figure out where you are. Decide where you want to be. And make a plan for how you’re going to get there” (Scroggins, 39).

     I found some truths I had not thought about in the book. In the New Testament, we are told to be light, holy, love, and truth. What is missing is fire because God alone is the Judge. I need to allow God to worry about the consequences. The most important point in the book is that I must learn how to lead myself so that I can live out my potential of leading others. “Spend some time praying that God will show you how you can be more trustworthy with the resources and authority he has entrusted to you” (Scroggins, 44). The author listed three ways to develop direct results in how I lead myself. The first is what I consume. What comes into my mind is what comes out of my leadership. I need to be intentional and remove those things in my life that are toxic and affect me negatively so that I can grow in my intentional leadership development. The second listed was what I attempt to do to stretch myself as a leader. Confront my insecurities. I also need to be comfortable with the mistakes I may make during my growth as that is an unending process. I liked how the author stated in one of his videos I watched, “don’t say I can’t do it, but I can’t do it now.” I can think of the big picture but break it down into smaller steps, so I am systematic in building my skills as the small details matter which builds my confidence in leadership. The third is the hardest step for me as it asked me to stretch myself by choosing who I surround myself with. I should be surrounding myself with growth minded people who will challenge me. To invest in myself is finding people willing to invest in me to grow within my leadership. Opening up and trusting others will be the most difficult part. I will need to break the comfort of my closed-off existence into the journey of growth so that I can become the best leader I can be in any circumstance.

     My mind has many mixed processes whirling around, but the one step I am going to start with is changing how I think. I need to focus is developing my critical thinking process. When I think of the term critical, I think of the toxic competitive negative thoughts that celebrates my failures. But after the reading, I need to transform that into critical thinking where I search out my motivation which is my heart and mind. Then choose to not need credit but have a positive attitude while I help others to feel like winners. The bottom like is leadership starts within me. It is my mind, heart, emotions, and systematic planning of how I move forward that matters throughout this process. It seemed a bit intimidating at first, but as I work through the steps, I believe that I am ready to move forward in my intentional growth to become the best leader I can be.

 

 

Bibliography

Scroggins, Clay. How to Lead When You're Not in Charge: Leveraging Influence When You Lack Authority. Zondervan, 2017.

 


Saturday, April 2, 2022

A Tale of Three Kings Book Response

 

Tanya Attebery

27 March 2022

Leadership 102: Self Leadership

Where to buy link: https://www.amazon.com/Tale-Three-Kings-Gene-Edwards/dp/1610451082

A Tale of Three Kings Response Paper

     “A gift is worn on the outer person; an inheritance is planted deep inside” (Edwards, XVII) is the first quote that stood out because like a seed planted under ground and not seen can bloom into a vibrant plant or flower. A seed planted in the heart fills the inner person which when it blooms is seen on the outer as the true reflection of God cannot be hidden. He bursts through people in vibrant colors even in times of pain, sorrow, and challenging times in life. Job 6:10 states “at least I can take comfort in this: Despite the pain, I have not denied the word of the Holy one” (www.biblegateway.com). Samuel in David’s youth told him he would be Saul’s successor as his heart sought after God’s own heart and throughout the book David in his youth refused to respond normally to Saul’s angry bitter leadership. Then in David’s old age he still refused to react to his grandson who loudly threatened a takeover of David’s kingdom but instead mourned the loss but still refused to move away from being the man after God’s own heart.

     God uses the outer Saul to break the inner Saul in our own hearts. Saul hated David so much that he threw spears to kill him and then tried to hunt him down to the point that David lived isolated in caves constantly on the run from the cruel king. “Even then, he never spoke a word or lifted a hand against Saul” (Edwards, 27). It is easier to allow offenses to simmer and respond with the fire hot vengeance like the saying “eye for and eye and a tooth” (www.collinsdictionary.com). This refers to the idea that people should be punished according to the way in which they offended. David instead responded, “better he kills me than I learn his ways” (Edwards, 36). Leadership doesn’t give me autonomy to reprimand or be scornful to those who may have wronged me over time. It is important for me to see through David’s example to not be defensive but refuse to allow hatred to enter my own heart. David chose to not destroy the Lord’s plan so even given much authority he stayed a trustworthy vessel. He lived out God’s example to honor even evil leadership. As a leader I must remember that the life of those around me belong to God and it is not my job to be their savior but to lead them to God and allow God to do his job of conviction of sin, repentance, and acceptance of the saving grace of Jesus. As I reflect on my own youth, I was Saul inward and outward. Now that I am older, I can see the pointlessness of my own heart of Saul as it did not change my circumstances, but just made them worse and my heart longed for relief. Letting go and letting God take that control brings a sense of freedom so that is what I would take into my role in the ministry of leadership.

      God’s plan for the redemption of the world means that in leadership it is essential to not allow power to corrupt. Saul was chosen by God and given authority, but he chose self-importance to take over so that his plans removed God’s authority. He was “willing to live in spiritual darkness” (Edwards, 40). It can be hard to understand how God gives power to unworthy vessels, but in turn I have learned that worldly power is limited by time. True transformation comes from individuals who are broken inwardly who live out a life of submission not with the view of man’s authority but that all authority comes from God. Worldly power strives to hold onto it through legalism which are to place more laws, rules, regulations, and fear over the people in their authority. I think at times I was given leadership when I was still too immature to understand the gravity of my influence on others. An angry leader has angry followers. I can remember a time when my staff were a bunch of grumblers, but it was because I did not reflect the right relationship with God. I understand that I should not give to others what I feel they deserved based on my own human emotion and limitations. I need to really rely on God’s grace and gentleness with his unending supply of restoration. In authority, I must hunger for God and his direction. Just as David “as grieved, yes, but he could not speak against those in seats of responsibility” (Edwards, 59).

     The last question I am reflecting on from the book is what would I do if faced with rebellion? I have had authority taken from not that I was doing a terrible job, but a higher authority came and took over that role in leadership. Did I feel a bit resentful? Yes, and at first my response was not in God’s will for me or those I complained to. I was not a good representation of Gad at the time. Now I see my error in thinking and how God used a Saul to test my heart, so I had a choice of becoming a Saul myself or becoming more like David. I know that God never honors division and I have outlasted many leaders over the years, and I no longer have those hidden motives of wanting to be recognized as one with sole authority. I don’t need to be right in the eyes of men, but recognize my audience is God and how he sees me means so much more to me over any title I could have in the world. David, in his old age, could have become like Saul trying to kill the young Absalom, but instead speaks of mercy as he put God above his own life as the decision maker within his heart. David would have to turn against his nature to treat Absalom like Saul treated him. David stayed true to his relationship with God even if that meant he lost all his Earthly power and possessions. “As surely as the sun rises, people’s hearts will be tested. Despite the many claims—and counterclaims—the hidden motives within the hearts of all who are involved will be revealed” (Edwards, 86). My pride has been a hinderance to me as a leader in my youth. I have learned that being broken just means that I humbly fall on my face before God. God is the one and only true vindicator.

     A hard lesson to learn is that man cannot force God into man’s will. Men will sacrifice everything even their souls for the satisfaction of ambition. David given so much still did not allow his own human authority to go unchecked before God. “I will not hinder God. No obstacle, no activity on my part lies between me and God’s will” (Edwards, 94). David gives all authority to God. As I enter my own journey in leadership, I would like to cling to the heart of David. To wake up each day expressing gratitude to God for giving me any responsibility to reflect his character of grace and love. Not that David was a push over as he showed a great deal of strength in his reservation of retaliation. He waited for God to provide direction and answers. Not willing to speak for God but to sit in the moment and allow God to shine in all his greatness. David believed God’s words and his life reflected that which I hope to come close to as I work through my journey of becoming a ministry leader. “No, I will not break my covenant; I will not take back a single word I said. I have sworn an oath to David, and in my holiness, I cannot lie: His dynasty will go on forever; his kingdom will endure as the sun. It will be as eternal as the moon, my faithful witness in the sky” (Psalm 89:34-37). May my life reflect the words of God breathed into my lifetime as David.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bibliography

     “Access Your Bible from Anywhere.” BibleGateway.com: A Searchable Online Bible in over

150 Versions and 50 Languages., https://www.biblegateway.com/.

 

     “Collins Online Dictionary: Definitions, Thesaurus and Translations.” Collins Online

 Dictionary | Definitions, Thesaurus and Translations, https://www.collinsdictionary.com/.

     Edwards, Gene. A Tale of Three Kings: A Study in Brokenness. Christian Books, 1980.

     Life Application Study Bible: NIV. Zondervan, 2019.

 

 

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